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Eurosonic 2009

Jan 15

Written by:
Thursday, January 15, 2009  RssIcon

The first big international music event of 2009 comes up this weekend - the 14th annual Eurosonic festival in the Dutch city of Groningen. The pan-continental showcase of around 180 up-and-coming acts (brought to you by the European Broadcasting Union, makers of Eurovision) takes place on 15-16 January. Dutch bands get their own extra day in the spotlight with the Noorderslag festival on 17 January.

Eurosonic 2009Last year’s edition launched Lykke Li (yay!) and The Hoosiers (nay!), and Eurosonic alumni include Franz Ferdinand, I’m From Barcelona and The Magic Numbers. Who’ll be the stars of Eurosonic 2009? (That’s not a rhetorical question; we really haven’t a clue.)

At the time of writing, four Irish acts have been confirmed to appear. Waterford’s Declan de Barra and Wexford lady Wallis Bird will be representing the south-eastern singer-songer scene. Fight Like Apes and The Coronas complete the Irish contingent, appearing at Eurosonic at the behest of 2FM.

France, for those of you here for the Frenchness, is sending eleven acts to the Lowlands. As you’d expect, the Gallic delegation is heavy on electronica. Our Dublin readers will be familiar with Birdy Nam Nam, the turntable team who played an eventful set at the ALT recently. Lesser-known to you may be the dancefloor-friendly Yuksek, the more experimental sounds of Jackson And His Computer Band, electro-trad chanteuse Hindi Zahra and the cinematic dATA.

Away from the repetitive beats, French Letter favourites John & Jehn will be there, along with recent Prix Constantin nominees Moriarty and the Haitian jazz-roots sound of singer-songer Mélissa Laveaux.

Also at Eurosonic will be Hollywood Mon Amour, the new project from Nouvelle Vague’s Marc Collin. Where NV covered (post-)punk and new wave classics, Hollywood Mon Amour now brings the same chillout converter to ‘80s film songs like ‘A View To A Kill’ and ‘Eye Of The Tiger’. If nothing else comes of Eurosonic 2009, we'll at least get to hear a downbeat acoustic version of 'Eye Of The Tiger'.

The French travelling party is completed by mid-table guitar bands Neimo and Naïve New Beaters.

There are some fine bands from featured country Belgium, notably Novastar, Girls In Hawaii and dEUS offshoot Zita Swoon. Best known of all the bands at Eurosonic 2009 is probably The Rakes – a good reason to check out unknown bands instead. You’ll find the full line-up of acts on the Eurosonic website.

Back to the French acts at Eurosonic; Neimo are currently gaining massive airplay in France with this song, ‘Johnny Five’:

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Aidan Curran, based in Paris, has been writing for CLUAS since 2004. More info about Aidan...

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